The city centre is divided into quarters with different attractions appealing to different crowds in each spot, whether it’s touching on Southampton’s vast history, shopping in excellent facilities or enjoying a look at majestic vessels as they pull up to shore. Check out our list below to see where the coolest neighbourhoods in Southampton are located, and find some hidden gems of this marvelous city, too.
The oldest part of Netley feels like a traditional, quaint village, with old shops, colourful cottages and its shingle beach looking across at Hythe. The newer developments have increased Netley’s population, but it has managed to keep its village, community feel. Home to Netley Abbey, the most complete surviving Cistercian monastery in Southern England, it inspires romance writers and poets to this very day.
Located in the north-east of Southampton, you’ll find the beautiful parish of West End. If you’re a fan of sport, West End is home to the Hampshire County Cricket Club and their stadium, the Ageas Bowl. Or, you may fancy a day out at the Itchen Valley Country Park, boasting a play area, play trail, off-road cycling track and a fantastic visitors centre.
Originally the site of Southampton’s first docks, Ocean Village is a marina, residential, business and leisure development close to the River Itchen. Enjoy a day here soaking up the atmosphere, gazing at the beautiful boats, and check out one of the latest movies at Cineworld. Then, finish off the day by tucking in to a hearty meal at one of the restaurants or bars along the front, including Banana Wharf and Chiquitos.
This Northern part of Southampton houses around 2,100 students from the University of Southampton, in its Glen Eyre Halls complex. Bassett also offers up some of the city’s main sporting facilities, including: the Southampton Sport Centre, a 150-acre site used to host the Millenium Youth games, offering facilities for football, netball, cross country, cricket and hockey; Southampton Snowspnorts Centre, boasting three floodlit dry ski slopes (110m, 90m and a nursery 30m slope); and Southampton Golf Course, which opened back in 1935 and offers the choice of an 18- or 9-hole course, and is set in a beautiful woodland environment.
Swaythling is home to the University of Southampton and, on campus, you will find one of the finest places to view contemporary and visual art, the John Hansard art gallery. With university life, a need for excellent public houses, live music, entertainment and theatre is a must – thankfully, Swaythling delivers!
North-east of the city centre, you will find Portswood, home to October Books, a not-for-profit independent bookstore that specialises in environmental, social and political subjects. For something a little lighter, you can enjoy a tipple from your choice of sports bars, nightclubs, real ale pubs and student-friendly pubs – including the themed Hobbit pub, where you can buy a drink named and designed after your favourite character! If you fancy some live music, you can head over to one of two music venues, the Brook or Talking Heads, as they open their doors and help Portswood come alive.
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Since you are here, we would like to share our vision for the future of travel - and the direction Culture Trip is moving in.
Culture Trip launched in 2011 with a simple yet passionate mission: to inspire people to go beyond their boundaries and experience what makes a place, its people and its culture special and meaningful — and this is still in our DNA today. We are proud that, for more than a decade, millions like you have trusted our award-winning recommendations by people who deeply understand what makes certain places and communities so special.
Increasingly we believe the world needs more meaningful, real-life connections between curious travellers keen to explore the world in a more responsible way. That is why we have intensively curated a collection of premium small-group trips as an invitation to meet and connect with new, like-minded people for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in three categories: Culture Trips, Rail Trips and Private Trips. Our Trips are suitable for both solo travelers, couples and friends who want to explore the world together.
Culture Trips are deeply immersive 5 to 16 days itineraries, that combine authentic local experiences, exciting activities and 4-5* accommodation to look forward to at the end of each day. Our Rail Trips are our most planet-friendly itineraries that invite you to take the scenic route, relax whilst getting under the skin of a destination. Our Private Trips are fully tailored itineraries, curated by our Travel Experts specifically for you, your friends or your family.
We know that many of you worry about the environmental impact of travel and are looking for ways of expanding horizons in ways that do minimal harm - and may even bring benefits. We are committed to go as far as possible in curating our trips with care for the planet. That is why all of our trips are flightless in destination, fully carbon offset - and we have ambitious plans to be net zero in the very near future.